“If there’s a book you really want to read but it hasn’t been written yet, then you must write it.” - Toni Morrison

Monday, August 18, 2014

A Great New Blog about Writing

Some of you, my lovely followers, may know about the amazing Anne-girl (see her blog here). Well, the thing is - Anne is starting a new blog that is dedicated just to the writing process. I know I am pretty excited because I'm sure Anne will have lots of very helpful tips on this new blog. Here is what Anne has to say about her new blog:

Half Baked is a blog dedicated to the art of writing and exploring what goes into a solid story. The blog operates on the principal that most stories are like cake, delicious and scrumptious and all the other cake words that are out there. But just like cake, a story can come out gooey and shaky in the middle, half baked. This blog is meant to help turn awesome ideas into solid, fully baked novels. Stop by ahalfbakedplot.blogspot.com on September first to join in the release party. There will be contests and a giveaway and of course virtual cake. 

Thank you all so much! 

So make sure you check out Anne's new blog!

Friday, August 15, 2014

good mood = writing

It's weird how the strangest things suddenly put me in a mood that says, "Hey, let's write!"

This morning, I was browsing the Internet, pretty much just wasting time. Then I thought, "I really want to listen to 'Counting Stars'. Just because." (Ever get that song craving?) The good-mood song was coupled with the fact that I was eating green grapes, which I love.


"Now I want to write."

What makes you WANT to write?

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

it came from a line

Sometimes I wonder why I ever spent so much time dreaming about a project not writing it down.

Sometimes I wonder if the story even means anything to me anymore.

And it still does...

All it  means that I've got to keep following where the muse takes me.

And I find my writing mood takes new directions whenever I've watched something new.

I've been thinking about the movie The Hunger Games and Haymitch's line "They aren't very happy with you". And the scene that follows is so powerful, I was just blown away. It looks simple to the eye - the man that leads the killing under President Snow's command, Seneca, is called to an audience with the President. He has just done something that the President didn't like. Seneca looks around the room, until he spots... a wine glass full of poison berries. To some, the image might not mean anything. But in a dictatorship/police state like Panem where no one is really safe no matter how high up in power you are, the message is clear.

I've always intrigued by apocalyptic and dystopian stories... because I see the world that we live in. A lot of people may not realize it, but there's already police-state elements underneath the surface in the world we live in today. The world we live in is slowly moving towards the like of Panem. It isn't so much the story of The Hunger Games, but the little elements here and there that blew me away - the crowds cheering madly like a bunch of immature children, thirsting for the bloodshed shown on TV (just like in the times of the gladiator) ... the rich people dressed in gaudy clothing and ridiculous makeup, who (as I've seen in a clip on YouTube from this movie's sequel) throw up on purpose to make more room for other delicacies (which reminds me very much of one of the greatest books I've ever read, Quo Vadis).

This was what directed my thoughts towards my story idea entitled (at the moment) "To Kill a President". The idea has changed its course a lot since I first posted it on this blog. But I feel it's ripening and maturing even more now.

Which is just great because I have so many things on my hands now, especially with college starting up again in a few weeks. I thought I was going to work on Innocent... but I suppose I should let those ideas simmer a little now that I just did an outline for a full re-write of everything I've ever done on this project. Then there's two contests I have a mind to enter... one is the The Beauty and the Beast retelling contest that I mentioned on here earlier. The other is an opportunity to be a writer of one of my favourite series - John Paul High II. While I doubt I'd win and I doubt I'd have time, I think I'll try, anyway. And if I did win, then I'd be willing to use all my free time to work on that - because it is a chance of a lifetime.

But, as I said before, I'll follow the muse.

List of works that have inspired this flicker of a flame so far: my own thoughts about the world today and how it could be in the future, The Hunger Games, Quo Vadis1984 (which I still have yet to read)

And I'm going to figure out how to work in the element of heightening the theme of instability and a dictatorship/police-state into my idea... and the way that the government hides from its citizens that they are really in a prison, but they don't realize it.

You could see the fear in the children's eyes.

You told me to run once, now it's my turn to tell you. Run. 
Just run. You have to get out, Lona.

But how could I possibly bring him back?

Be strong, my daughter. Be strong.

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Okay, Wow

So after saying that I would write 50 pages of Innocent during July and then that turned to outlining and then that turned to extending the deadline to also including August and then I didn't write anything for a long time... I started writing again. I got massive ideas (including during church - I'm sorry, but sermons can be very inspiring!). I got up to 24 pages and I even started dating events in my book (until I got bored of that and did some outlining using the amazing book 45 Master Characters).

And it's been decided. I'm scrapping everything I've done over the last four years (besides the major plot ideas) and I'm starting completely over again. I'm making the first chapters more believable and not the ridiculous close-to-garbage I was proud to show off a few years ago (this is why I'm taking longer on your ebook, Jessy - plus that I was on another unexpected vacation - but I will get it done at some point, I promise!). I'm giving other characters more things to do. And mainly, I'm very very very VERY excited. And so will all of you be. Because...


I feel like I could use some alpha and beta readers. (The following descriptions are mostly in the words of Anne-girl.

Alpha readers are people who read a book while you write it. This will be only for Innocent at the moment. I will send them out to my Alpha readers as I write the sections. What I'm looking for in a reader is for someone to write comments in red{or blue or whatever} beside the story. I want to know what made you squeal or squirm or bored. I'll send you the story in the body of an email which you are free to past into a word document if you like. Please do not steal my work or print it out or anything like that {but we all know you wouldn't right?}.

Beta readers read the first draft once it it finished. These readers are asked to read the whole thing strait through comments are encouraged but you don't have to if you don't want to. When you are done I'll send you a list of questions about the book to answer and ask you to tell me your favourite thing about the book and the thing that irked you the most.

Why won't I be posting excerpts on the blog (except in some cases where interview questions like "Actually Doing Something in July" asks me to... or I feel like doing doing so)? Because my dad, who is an editor (and so he knows these things) told me that once you post something on the Internet (including a blog) it's considered already published. Therefore, if you want to get your book published, don't post anything more than small snippets on the Internet.



That's about it.

Not a big deal, is it?


Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Answering Questions About Miranda

Virtual cheesecake. Om nom nom. (In reality, I'm going to a place today where I'm going to eat real cheesecake. Be jealous.)

So it's Beautiful People time!

Miranda is one of those characters who is more of a major character...but not as major as Marianne and Rhona.

1. What does your character regret the most in her life?
At the beginning of the story? That her parents wouldn't let her do anything and kept her extremely sheltered. At the end of the story? That she didn't listen to what she was taught by her parents.

2. What is your character's happiest memory? Most sorrowful memory?
Her happiest memory is when Sam professed his love for her. Her most sorrowful memory is when her parents forbid her from seeing her best friend again when the latter's father professed a belief that Miranda's parents deemed as unorthodox.

3. What majorly gets on her nerves?
When other people tell her what to do but don't give her any reason for it, just expect her to obey without question.

4. Do they act differently when they're around other people as opposed to being alone? If so, how?
When around people, her barriers are up and she forces herself to act strong and uncaring. But when she's alone, that's when her heart is on her sleeve, her defences are down, and she's like a little girl who needs comfort.

5. What are their beliefs and superstitions?
Miranda came from a super strict Catholic family. She wasn't allowed to question anything, and the very environment reeked of tension. But when Miranda's older sister does something unspeakable (in her parent's eyes), Miranda starts to wonder if her parents were really right.

6. What are their catchphrases, or things they say frequently?
"That's so cool!"

7. Would they be more prone to facing fears or running from them?
Running from them. Definitely.

8. Do they have a good self image?
Heck no.

9. Do they turn to people when they're upset, or do they isolate themselves?
Miranda wants to be able to turn to others, but she decides that she can't let herself go that far.

10. If they were standing next to you would it make you laugh or cry?
Perhaps laugh. But if Miranda thought she were alone (therefore not seeing you), the sight might evoke tears.